Monday, November 17, 2008

A Night In The Emergency Room

Yesterday around noon, I started to not feel so great.

No big surprise, my body is on tons of medications, pumped full of hormones, has just survived surgury, a couple fainting spells, some vomiting, along with about 2 months of needles and bloodtests. It's not surprising that I would feel pretty yucky.

But around 2pm, I was sick to my stomach again. Thinking that would be the end of it, I laid down to rest. Boy, was I wrong! I continued to barf my guts out (sorry for being so crass, but man!) every 10-15 minutes until 10pm. At that point I was so weak, dehydrated, and couldn't even get up off the bathroom floor, so Dave called Dr. Schoolcraft. At this point, I had bared up all my IVF medications and couldn't get any more down, and felt sicker than I ever had been.

The consensus was that I needed to go straight to emergency. CCRM worries about extreme sickness, high fevers, chills, sore stomach, and a number of other symptoms that could indicate OHSS (Ovarian Hyper stimulation Syndrome). This is where fluid from all those eggs I made leaks from the ovaries into the stomach and other organs and can cause serious health risks. Going to the ER is my worst nightmare, but since I was in no condition to argue, off we went.

Dave got me to the emergency room right away, where I proceeded to barf in the public bathroom, until the nurse came and got me with a wheelchair, because I was so weak I couldn't make it down the hall. I was into the hospital bed in a jiff, and the nurse covered me up with warm blankets to help with my chills. Dr. Schoolcraft had already called (god bless him) and spoke with the doctor on call, so the doctor knew all about my medications and what we we there to check for.

The first thing they did was get an IV in me, and pump me full of fluids and anti-nausea and anti-anxiety medications. They needed to take blood -- 8 viles -- and check for a bunch of things, I don't even remember what. They let the fluids work for about three hours, and then they wanted me to do a catscan. Dr. Schoolcraft and the ER doctor were working very closely together so that no medications they were giving me would compromise a possible Egg Transfer. I just remember being so thirsty, and they wouldn't let me drink water -- just in case I needed surgery. But they did make me drink a liter of solution they need in my stomach for the catscan. The catscan of my stomach was quick but awful, especially when they put the iodine into my IV. That stuff burns and makes you feel so disgusting and hot all over. I was so glad when it was done.

Then it was back to the room, for more liquid IV and a few more tests.

Finally at around 3am my catscan results came back. Dr. Schoolcraft was still up, waiting for my results, and the ER doctor faxed them to him. Can you believe that?! What an amazing doctor he is to care about his patients so much, as I am sure he could have just left it all to the ER doctor and looked in the morning. I have so much respect for him for staying so closely linked to my condition throughout the night. And am so glad he's our doctor!

Finally, at 4am my IV was taken out and we were discharged. We were exhausted and just wanted nothing more than to go home to bed.

I woke up this morning at noon, still tired, but hydrated. And I had to go to CCRM for a blood draw (Ugh - more bloodwork after a full night of IV and bloodwork!) and and ultrasound to check about any possible fluid still in the ovaries. For somebody with a medical phobia -- this cycle has practically pushed me to my limit!

But the good news is that Dr. Schoolcraft has completely rules out OHSS, and the conclusion was that I picked up a nasty 24 hour GI track flu that is going around.

Talk about bad timing!

Today I'm feeling much better, resting, eating chicken noodle soup, and drinking ginger ale and vitamin water. I have got to get my strength built up for my embryo transfer tomorrow. Based on all the results, Dr. Schoolcraft is comfortable and confident going ahead with embryo transfer if I'm feeling up to it.

Hopefully by tomorrow I'll be ready for our embabies to come home.


Polly Gamwich said...

Holy COW!!!

I am so sorry you had to experience that. I was so glad to read that Dr. Schoolcraft was so awesome! That makes me feel so good. What a good guy ... seriously, I'm sure many other doctors would have just let the ER crew do their thing and checked it in the morning.

Wow, wow, wow.

And good job to you for making it through a frightening night! I know what it's like to be in the ER all night. And it ain't fun ... especially w/phobia like you have! You're so brave.

Can't wait to hear how the embie report goes! And I hope you're feeling up to an ET tomorrow! (and if not, we support you if you wait!)

And I'm sure the ol' DH gets some kudos here - it's never easy to care for an ailing wife - scary, not easy.

Glad to hear you're doing better.

Nikki said...

Oh dear - that sounds like quite a trying night! I'm so sorry you had to go through all that.

Dr Schoolcraft sounds more and more awesome, the more I read about him (and of course, with each time I've met him, my opinion climbs up another notch!) How nice of him to stay up and work with the ER docs on your case. How very sweet!

Glad it wasn't OHSS, and I hope you're feeling great for transfer tomorrow! Good luck and feel better soon!!

Anonymous said...

Great doctor. Very impressive. You are rocking this cycle!! Nothing you can do but put your head down and power through. IVF sucks. (I hate saying that b/c without I wouldn't have a chance).


trish said...

WOW - unbelievable Lisa. The entire thing - a flu, an OHSS scare, a GREAT doctor, etc etc etc etc etc etc etc...unbelievable! I believe, and I hope you do to, that there is a light at the end of this tunnel.

I am glad to hear that you are resting up and feeling better. I will be thinking of you all day tomorrow and wishing for you a very successful transfer.

I have to agree with anonymous - you are rocking this cycle. Your perserverance is admirable and inspirational.

Anonymous said...

Yikes! Glad you are feeling better. If it's any consolation, clearly you are in great hands with Dr. S., and thank heavens this happened today and not tomorrow.

Not to be nosy, but with such a pronounced medical phobia are you going to be OK with a pregnancy? (how's that for being optimistic, too?)

Polly Gamwich said...

Hey lady,

Just saw that you commented on my blog, and wanted to respond!

We do not have embryos on ice, we have eggs on ice. Just plain ol' eggs. We had 2 ER's we got 5 mature and 1 mature respectively ... the EGGS were CGH tested and we have two CGH tested normal eggs on ice.

So they have to overcome:
and proper cell division

before they can compete with any totcicles!!!

I am getting pumped about doing a FET, especially if I'm not in early menopause - then I don't have to feel like I have to store up my eggs. But, I'm concerned that I'll do the FET and then just have another m/c and end up waiting 3 months before I can do CCRM again. (but really, I can't count my chickens right?)

Anyhow, thanks for your input and I'm hopeful for TOMORROW!!!!

Polly Gamwich said...

Ok, sorry for going back and forth like this, but hey, at least our comment count is going up, up, UP! :-)

So I did use the phrase FET in my post, so it's easy to see why ppl are confused. Ppl don't usually do what we're doing, so they don't have a quick to type term for thaw eggs, fertilize, run a FET like protocol on me, and then transfer fresh embryos on a frozen embie protocol ... strange.

So here are the other pieces ... (not that it matters now, I'm just beating a dead horse, I just want to tell you :-)

I am afraid to transfer my eggs to CCRM b/c I want to make sure that the person who froze them (vitrification - so they *should* survive better than traditionally frozen eggs) should be the person to thaw them, and that would be the head embryologist at SIRM.

As well, when we do go to CCRM, we will not be making fresh embies??!? We will do the same thing, retrieve eggs, CGH test only PB1 (on the eggs) and then only fertilize (at a later date) the "normal" eggs (just like we would here at SIRM) only I'm hoping that the CCRM protocol will yield more eggs.

Ok, enough with my blathering ... I hope you're feeling much better especially since it's so much later in the day, keep those feet kicked up and those liquids a pourin, k?

Lisa said...

Best of luck to you tomorrow Lisa! I'm so glad you're feeling better, what an ordeal! Sending lots of sticky embryo vibes your way :)

Emily said...

Oh NO!!! What are the chances? I am so sorry to hear how very sick you were. YUCK.

Sounds like you drew on some inner strength in a dark moment to get you through a very difficult time. You conquered it and came out stronger than ever!

Glad you are feeling better and GL at transfer!

Rest up and relax!

Linda said...

You poor thing! You have been through so much already and on top of this the stomach bug. How awful! But I'm glad that you're feeling better. Perhaps all the yakking is an indication of the morning sickness that is to come! I can't believe that I just said that. Oh how I so look forward to having morning sickness! lol Good luck with your transfer tomorrow! May you have lots of strong and healthy blasts to choose from and hope you have an easy transfer! I have a good feeling this is it for you!! :)

Anniep said...

Ok, I'm seriously impressed with Dr. Sch... but maaan! You really shouldn't have to find out that kind of stuff first hand!
I hope the ET goes smoothly tomorrow and the puking ends soon and you're on the mend.

Anonymous said...

If Lisa was able to go through this, she can go through any medical procedures.
After years of problems, I have been pregnant a couple of times. A normal pregnancy does not require any medical interventions or needles except for the epidural part.

So Lisa, hang in there! Just keep going & think of the end result!!!!! GO LISA! GO LISA! GO LISA! GO DAVID of course :-D

Not Your Aunt Bea said...

Hoping that the 24 hr. GI bug is the only blip for this iVF! That is awful and I am glad you are feeling better. May you have a great transfer tomorrow.

Anonymous said...


You tough cookie. Way to hang in there and big props to your DH too.

BTW, ignore that comment about making it though pregnancy. Besides being thoughtless, it's really, really untrue. I have had 3 children and undergone 3 IVF cycles trying for a 4th and IVF is a completely different animal. I got a blood clot in the first round that almost killed me. It's AWFUL!!!! Please try and put that comment out of your mind. You are so tough and have gone through so much--keep your strength here in the last day!
Please rest and love your DH for being such a trooper.
Tomorrow is your day, Lisa!
I am crossing my fingers for you!!!
Annie in Seattle

Lost in Space said...

OMG, Lisa!!! I cannot believe the ringer you have been through for this cycle. You poor thing!!! As happy as I am to hear that Dr. Schoolcraft was so awesome, I'm sorry it was your horrible experience to show this.

You have came, saw, and kicked some ass through this whole cycle. Seriously, you are one strong woman!!!

I'm praying for many beautiful embryos for you tomorrow for transfer and freeze.

I have been catching up with all your posts tonight!! Holy cow, girl, you are one busy blogger!! (;

Auntie Anne said...

Oh my gosh Lisa.. Now you have had enough things happen.. Now the good things guys have gone through enough.. Keep smiling.. What a terrific Doctor ..restores your faith in the medical profession.

Sue said...

OMG- this cycle has to work. With all that craziness, it is not an option. What an incredible doctor. You'd think he's so famous that he'd be full of himself and unwilling to put himself out. I am so impressed!

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh Lisa, you poor thing! I can't believe this happened at such a critical time...I am SO glad you are better and made it through ET a-ok! What an awesome RE!